Identity Designed is a showcase of brand identity projects from around the world.

Mike Fischer

Contributed by New Zealand born designer Mike Fischer.

Mike Fischer

After deciding to completely redesign my website I thought it was time to go the next step and develop my own identity.

Visually I wanted the identity to be simple, clean and understated. But as a designer that prides myself on conceptual thinking, I really wanted to capture my ideas-driven approach to design too.

The end result is built around the classic line commonly heard between freelancers and their employers ‘pencil me in’. By designing a simple outlined version of my name and what I do (referencing paint by numbers) and using ‘pencil me in’ as the call to action, I created an identity that is clean and unfussy whilst also injecting a bit of wit and personality into it.

The outlined mark itself is left blank allowing the audience to choose whether or not they wish to pencil it in. The font I used was the clean, neutral and timeless Helvetica Neue. The bold weight was used to allow space inside the text to be penciled in. I kerned the type very tight until some of the letters merged together to make it appear more as one shape, like paint by numbers. I initially had numbers inside the mark as well but it was all quite cluttered, the end result being more subtle.

Pencil is used in all forms of personal correspondence with handwritten letters and postcards, which gives it a nice human touch. I also pencil in the ‘With Compliments’ on the compliments postcards, as the message is coming from me, which also helps to reinforce the idea.

Little black pencils are sent out with all letters as a leave behind. This would ideally prompt the audience to get in touch… or perhaps they may instead be used to sketch some fantastic new ideas in the future?

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

Mike Fischer

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12 appreciated remarks about “Mike Fischer”

  1. I am digging this Mike Fischer! Very cool!

  2. I’m digging this, too. It’s a clean design but not totally original as other companies like American Apparel have used Helvetica in a similar way. The black envelopes are sure to stand out. The website does a good job of putting the portfolio on center stage.

  3. Love this, very original and simple, my favourite combination. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Hey Mike,

    Love your design. It’s simple, clean, fun and sophisticated all at the same time.

    Nicely done.


  5. I really like the business cards with the black edging. The pencils are a good idea, and the black envelope stood out the most to me. There are a few “minus’s” here, however as a whole I think it works and is effective. Nice job.

  6. Not really a very original idea in both concept and execution (what is there is done very well however), but I can see this working really well within the scale of the world that an individual freelancer operates in.

  7. I went to Mike’s website and I think his work is beautifully elegant especially the Rose and the Wooden Hearts piece.

  8. I think Mike has brilliantly captured the creative feel that is expected from a designer, without going so ‘wacky’ as to put any clients off.

    I love the idea of a marketing manager absent-mindedly shading in the letters while wondering who to contact for design services, then suddenly doing a cartoon double-take, reading the card & picking up the phone.

  9. I like the simplicity of it a lot.

    Is it my browser, or are the transitions on main project menu not working properly?

    I’m a big fan of pencils, but I wonder about the longevity of the identity and how much it connects to Mike’s personality and how he goes about his work (it may be perfect, hence I’m just wondering). If pencil is a big thing, I would have gone with a custom font (hand-drawn, perhaps) to reinforce a sense creativity and originality. The ‘pencil me in’ for the contact page is also clever, but I hope it’s not too clever and people don’t search in vain for a contact page (I speak from bitter experience on this point, having lost potential clients…).

    The one thing I’m afraid I don’t like is the black envelopes. They stand out, but it might be difficult to write long addresses into those white lines and I wonder if the postage mark might be a problem (?).

    I want one of those think book, though.

  10. Hey guys, just wanted to say thanks for all the positive words and feedback. Good to see it has more or less gone down well with other designers which is effectively my target market. Glad you all liked it and thanks again David for the feature.



  11. It’s great to see a fellow kiwi on Identity Designed.

    Great feature, fantastic design, and I wish you all the best!

  12. “pencil me in” I use the same tagline in my personal brand :)

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